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The Week in Social 11/01 - 11/05

The Week in Social rounds up the best of Iowa’s uplifting stories, exciting initiatives and fun events from all 99 counties discovered through social media. In a time where every bit of good news is cherished, this series is devoted to being a fun, lighthearted way to stay informed about Iowa’s good news.

New Golf Entertainment Facility in West Des Moines

Iowa is making another hole in one by opening Suite Shots in West Des Moines. The golf entertainment center will include a 50,000-square-foot facility with a restaurant, bar and 60 climate-controlled bays. Suite Shots will use the same Toptracer Range technology owned by Top Golf, but will use real golf balls instead of limited-flight balls. The facility will also include a learning academy so players of all levels will enjoy the new facility.

“Some of the folks that are having the most fun are non-golfers. This isn’t as intimidating as a golf course, and it’s more time efficient than a golf course,” said Mark Johnson, president and CEO of Suite Shots.

Construction is expected to begin in mid-2022 and be completed by summer of 2023.

Join the Herd to Protect Bison

The state of Iowa has played an important role in the return of bison, a species that was nearly extinct in the 20th century. The Bison Bridge Foundation wishes to protect the keystone species by petitioning to repurpose a bridge on I-80 into a wildlife and recreational crossing. The crossing would allow bison to cross safely by connecting the Illinois and Iowa riverfronts on the Mississippi River. The foundation plans on the bridge being privately funded and wishes for the site to eventually become a National Park with a separate pedestrian bridge to allow for safe wildlife viewing. Visit the website to learn more about the project, volunteer or sign the petition.

Experience the History of the Mississippi River

If you are looking for an aquatic adventure that’s equal parts fun and educational, visit the National Mississippi River Museum & Aquarium in Dubuque. The mission of the museum is to inspire stewardship by creating educational experiences where history and rivers come alive. The facility holds more than 36 different species of aquatic creatures including North American River Otters and Green Sea Turtles. You can feed stingrays, enjoy a behind the scenes tour with an experience aquarist and enjoy a 4D movie experience at the immersion theater. If you are interested in the boats that traveled on the historic river, you can board the William M. Black dredge boat for a self-guided tour, attend a demonstration about belt-driven machinery and learn about the history of boat making at the Boat Shop.

Immerse Yourself in Nature at LSP

With crisp air, beautiful colors and historic structures, Ledges State Park in Madrid is the perfect place for an escape in nature. The park is one of Iowa’s most historic and unique destinations offering breathtaking views of sandstone ledges that tower 100 feet over the Des Moines River. Plus, you’ll see numerous structures from the 1930s built by the Civilian Conservation Corps including an iconic stone bridge spanning Peas Creek. Ledges State Park is the perfect destination whether you are looking to hike, camp or see a bit of history while walking along the stream. The site also offers two picnic shelters, an amphitheater, playground and restrooms.

When you visit, be sure to check in using the Iowa State Park Passport to earn prizes and keep track of your outdoor adventures.

Published November 10, 2021

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